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Supreme Court Considers Taking Up Case On Whether Homeless Can Legally Sleep In Public Places

In this Sept. 19, 2017 photo, homeless people stand among their items along 1...

Photo by Gregory Bull / AP Photo

Above: In this Sept. 19, 2017 photo, homeless people stand among their items along 17th Street in San Diego.

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U.S. Supreme Court justices are meeting Friday to decide whether to take up an appeal of a 9th Circuit ruling on homelessness. Whatever they decide could have a major impact on San Diego and other cities.

Aired: December 6, 2019 | Transcript

A case that began a decade ago on whether cities can enforce laws against sleeping on the sidewalk if no shelter is available, has made its way to the U.S. Supreme Court.

The justices are meeting to decide whether to weigh in on a ruling from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals that said enforcing such laws violates the 8th Amendment prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment.

The appeal of the 9th Circuit Court's ruling is supported by San Diego, along with Los Angeles and a number of other communities in the western states.

RELATED: Report: San Diego Needs $1.9B For Permanent Solutions To Homelessness

The justices are expected to announce their decision next week, and if they decide to take the case, a ruling is expected sometime next spring.

David Savage, who covers the Supreme Court for the Los Angeles Times, joined Midday Edition on Friday to discuss the case.

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